Walkley Foundation says international reporting award decision is final despite MEAA pushback

The Walkley Foundation will stand by its decision to abolish its international reporting award despite a resolution by the MEAA’s national media section committee calling on the board to reconsider.

In the resolution the committee asked Walkley CEO Jacqui Park to consult with interested parties to “best find a way forward to resolve this situation”. Two days later the Walkley’s organisers responded on Twitter that the decision is final.

Since making the decision earlier this month to axe the international reporting category as part of a broader revamping of the awards, the Walkley Foundation has been under fire by the journalism community.

The resolution from the union’s National Media Selection Committee recognises the independence of the Walkley board and the need for the awards to reflect modern journalism but urges the decision to be reconsidered given “the weight of concern among MEAA members”.

A copy of the full text of the resolution was published earlier this week:

Resolution passed by the MEAA National Media Section committee meeting

Monday, July 10 2017

This meeting of MEAA’s National Media Section


1. That the Walkley advisory board is an independent body overseen by its chair and the CEO of the Walkley Foundation.

2. That advisory board has recently changed categories for the Walkley awards in order to achieve what it believes is a better reflection of the current media industry.

3. Part of that change includes the removal of the Walkley award for international reporting.

4. There has been significant response in the industry – including from very many MEAA members – calling on the Walkley advisory board to reverse this decision.

5. We note that many of our members take significant personal risk in reporting from overseas.


NMS is very reluctant to comment on the independent oversight of the Walkley awards. Its independence is critical to its role as the pre-eminent national awards for journalism.

Nonetheless, given the weight of concern among MEAA members, we call on the Walkley advisory board to reconsider its decision to drop the category for international reporting.

To this end we respectfully ask the Walkley CEO Jacqui Park to convene in-person consultation meetings with interested parties as to best find a way forward to resolve this situation to everybody’s mutual satisfaction.


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